keywords

clothing • communication • culture clash & contrasts • gestures • intercultural communication • Marrakech • masks & facial coverings • Morocco • non-verbal communication

“Who was that masked woman?”

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Marrakech, Morocco
Mid-1970s

Sometimes a whole world opens up suddenly right before you — an epiphany of sorts. If you are young, sweet, and naïve, this can be a new and awesome experience of self-discovery. And for novice travelers whose curiosity needs quenching, this serves to fuel our wanderlust all the more.


A Dropout Begs His Way Across the Sahara

keywords

Algeria • beggars • cons, scams & ripoffs • crazy scoundrels • deserts • driving • getting away with something • king for a day • money • Niger • North Africa • the Sahara Desert

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

The Sahara Desert
The Late 1960s

Told to me by * “Winnie.” I knew a guy who was traveling the Sahara with his wife, five kids, and a dog. He went from town to town and conned people out of money, food, gasoline, water, and just about whatever he needed. People even fixed his car. …


When Souvenirs Get the Best of Us!

keywords

collections • the Collector • cons, scams & ripoffs • Egypt • hobbies • postage stamps • the souvenirs • Suez Canal • travel psychology

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Suez Canal, Egypt,
The Early 1950s

Told to me by *Unknown. Were you ever a postage stamp collector? Did you ever get like a bag full of stamps from just about everywhere? Wasn’t it exciting when you did?

When I was younger, we used to travel back to Europe ever so often when my father went on leave, and we would travel by ship and go through…


Brilliant! What Can Be Worse than This?

keywords

baby in the air scam • Barcelona • close calls & great escapes • cons, scams & ripoffs • fear • danger • Gypsies • national character • pickpockets • Spain • travel tips • theft • urban legends & myths

A baby is presumably tossed over to you and is seemingly now in your arms. “Here! Have a look at my cute baby!”

What do you do? What do you do?

By Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist


Giving it a go!

keywords

begging • the Champs-Élysées cons, scams & ripoffs • crazy scoundrels • France • funny • getting away with something • money • Paris

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Paris, France
The 1960s

Told to me by Eric B. N. Talk about wild and crazy things. I enjoy traveling so much because you can do wild and crazy things that you really can’t do when you are trying to sort of fill a role in a permanent place in society.

One example is begging along the Champs-Élysées, which is one of Paris’s most exclusive shopping areas…


Too Friendly for My Taste!

keywords

car rentals • cons, scams & ripoffs • driving • La Paz • Mexico • San Jose del Cabo • transportation

“Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me!”

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

San Jose del Cabo, Mexico
2015

Told to me by Steve B. It was the last Pemex gasolinera (gas station) on our way back to the international airport in San Jose Del Cabo, Baja Sur, Mexico. …


Will work for Café Lattes & More

keywords

begging • cons, scams & ripoffs • crazy scoundrels • extortion • funny • getting away with something • India • Rishikesh

Will work for lattes! Why Lie, I need a beer! Homeless vet! Stranded!

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Rishikesh, India
1993


A Not so Subtle Extortion Attempt

keywords:

airplanes & airports • borders • bribes • cons, scams & ripoffs • customs & immigration • funny • Moscow • Russia • travel tips

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Sheremetyevo Airport, Moscow, Russia,
2001

Ive heard it once, and I’ve heard it over and over again. But this time it’s in the modern era and Russia, of all places.

In my trip along the Russian waterways from St. Petersburg to Moscow on the good ship Leo Tolstoy, I heard rumors of tourists being extorted by Russian immigration officials to pay a bogus per-person fee on the…


And the Ancient Artifacts Scam

Two scams to be wary of in Egypt and elsewhere

keywords

ancient artifacts • animal rides • Cairo • camels • cameras & photography • carnivals & circuses •cons, scams & ripoffs • Egypt • funny • money • North Africa • photo ops • the Pyramids • roadside attractions • taxicabs from hell • transportation • travel tips • urban legends & myths

“When you go to the Pyramids outside Cairo, we just had to take a tourist camel ride…”

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist


A Traffic Accident Gone Awry

A VW Bus trip from Hell!

keywords

accidents & mishaps • close calls & great escapes • civil unrest • danger • fear • India • men chasing you • menacing locals • Mumbai (Bombay) • VW Bus travel

by Michael Brein, PhD,
The Travel Psychologist

Bombay (Mumbai), India
The 1960s

Told to me by Michael Jason M. We were traveling in a Volkswagen bus, traveling very super economy and enjoying ourselves. We were above Bombay (now Mumbai), just after Rajasthan, traveling with a bunch of people of different nationalities.

Michael Brein

I’m The Travel Psychologist. I coined the term! I’ve collected thousands of amazing travel tales and highlight the psychology behind them. Journey with me!

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